Maybe you’re like me and you’ve been wondering whether affiliate marketing is a good business model to pursue.
In this post, I’ll unpack the question: Is affiliate marketing safe to earn a stable income?
Here’s the quick answer before I get into the details about ways to reduce risk with affiliate marketing.
Affiliate marketing is safe and you can earn a stable income from the business model. However, diversifying to additional income streams and marketing streams will help tremendously to spread the risk if you’re looking to go full-time.
Now, let’s take an inside look at what some of the top affiliate marketers and online business owners are doing to use affiliate marketing but also diversify their income. Plus, I’ll share the different income streams and marketing streams you may want to consider at some point for your online business.
Ready? Let’s get started. 😃
Is Earning Affiliate Marketing Commissions With Affiliate Marketing Safe Enough To Have A Stable Income?
A lot of people get into affiliate marketing so that they can earn a completely passive income that will earn money on autopilot with no maintenance…
There’s a BIG problem though… passive income does NOT exist!
Related Post: Read more on how I define and whether or not passive income exists here.
Every form of income requires at least some level of maintenance.
The closest thing you can get to passive income is dividend stocks. Even then, you still need to check in every so often to make sure your investments are trending upwards.
Now, back to affiliate marketing.
You can definitely earn a full-time income from affiliate commissions alone.
Here are the types of affiliate programs I recommend focusing on if you want to build up a substantial steady income from affiliate marketing:
- Evergreen Affiliate Programs – These are affiliate programs that are centered around products that don’t change with time.
- Recurring Affiliate Programs – These affiliate programs pay out a recurring commission for the lifetime of the customer that you refer to the company.
- High Ticket Affiliate Programs – These affiliate programs give huge commissions greater than $1,000 for a single sale.
Diversifying your affiliate programs to include each of those three types above will inherently reduce the risk you’ll face.
Super Affiliates Earning A Stable Income: How Are They Monetizing?
Now, let’s take a look at three of the top super affiliates and see how they are monetizing their business.
Super Affiliate #1: Pat Flynn
Pat Fynn owns Smart Passive Income (SPI) and monetizes his business in multiple ways.
Besides earning affiliate commissions from his blog posts and YouTube videos when recommending products, Pat also makes money from:
- SPI Pro Membership
- Individual Courses
- Ads on blog and YouTube Channel
Super Affiliate #2: Miles Beckler
Miles Beckler is another super affiliate that promotes almost everything on his own website.
He earns a ton of his money from affiliate commissions but also makes money from his membership of inner circle true fans that follow him on YouTube.
Super Affiliate #3: Neil Patel
Neil Patel has one of the largest followings online when it comes to learning SEO.
Neil Patel actually focuses less on affiliate marketing and more on products he owns:
- Creating Software (SAAS)
- Selling Consultations (high ticket product)
Diversify Your Affiliate Marketing Business With Multiple Income Streams
One of the best ways to reduce your risk and earn a stable income with affiliate marketing is by diversifying how you’re earning your income.
I know… consulting seems like the last thing you would ever want to do. It seems like it’s the least passive thing you can do to make an income online.
However, you can make it more passive by not having the consultation be a live call or chat. Instead, you can have the customer send you the necessary info you need to consult what they’re working on.
In this way, you can then record an audio clip or video of you going through one-on-one and sharing your knowledge of how the customer can change and improve upon what they’re doing.
By focusing on consulting, you have one of the best ways to earn a high ticket sale. A single consultation session can even be upwards of tens of thousands of dollars once you’ve grown a large audience.
Packaging what you know and putting it into an e-book is a fantastic way to create your first info product online.
E-books are super simple to make and if you’ve got an extensive knowledge on a subject then why not package it up and sell it on your website.
This can be really easy to do if you’ve been creating a ton of high quality and valuable blog posts over time. All you need to do is take your best blog posts that are related to each other, re-word them, add in some additional tools (spreadsheets and pdfs), and then you have in e-book ready to sell.
If you ask me, there are typically two kinds of people who start building out their first website:
- People who want to monetize right away and throw Google Adsense up on their website
- People who focus on affiliate commissions and never put up ads on their site
You really shouldn’t be taking either of these approaches. I recommend building up the volume of traffic you’re getting until you can join a more premium ad broker such as Ezoic, Mediavine, or AdThrive.
Additionally, I do recommend placing ads on your affiliate site. You might be surprised and find that you end up getting more money each month from ads than you do from affiliate commissions.
Selling your own online courses is an amazing way to be in full control of your income.
Unlike affiliate commissions which can be cut without notice or completely shut down, selling your own digital courses makes a ton of sense if you want a more stable income.
The good news is that courses require very little maintenance or upkeep to keep bringing in sales month after month passively.
Memberships are a great way to ensure you have a stable income coming in from your online business.
Every single month you can make a solid plan on how much you can spend and the amount of income you can expect. This is all due to the fact that the recurring income from a membership will keep paying month after month.
The only drawback is that you’ll need to put more effort into maintaining the content and updating it so people don’t leave the membership too early and your churn rate suffers.
6. Software As A Service (SAAS)
This finally revenue stream is probably the best way to ensure a stable income.
However, it comes at the cost of having to get:
- Billing Support
- Customer Support
- Technical Support
Managing a team of people and having the capital to maintain and update your software can be challenging.
The big thing I recommend here if you’re looking to create software is to make it simple but unique to where there are very few questions or technical issues that people may come up against. This will greatly reduce the cost of your support.
Diversify Your Affiliate Marketing Business With Multiple Marketing Streams
Another way to diversify and reduce risk to have a stable affiliate marketing income is by diversifying your marketing streams.
So, once you’ve mastered one traffic source you can start to expand your business to multiple marketing channels.
Here are some marketing streams you may want to consider to drive traffic.
Starting a blog and getting traffic using SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is my preferred way of getting steady and long-term traffic.
The main benefits are that you actually own your website and can put whatever you want on it. This includes things like:
- affiliate links
- info products
Plus, you don’t have to worry about your account getting shut down (*cough Facebook) since you don’t have one!
2. YouTube Channel
Starting a YouTube channel is honestly the best way to truly build a brand around your online business.
Most of the content you create online is commodity content, where the visitor simply gets the information and leaves without any regard to that actual brand.
With YouTube, it’s so much easier to de-commoditize your brand and start to build something that people feel apart of and are attracted to.
This inherently builds trust and is critical if you’re thinking about launching an info product any time soon.
A podcast is another great way to spread your message to the world.
More and more people are looking to podcasts to consume content throughout their day.
4. Email List
Your email list is the final marketing stream that can’t be left out or left to the wayside.
Your email list are your fans that want to stay in touch with your brand and your best content as it’s released.
You can start to build a meaningful relationship through email and eventually launch an info product that can make massive sales.
Final Thoughts On Is Affiliate Marketing Safe For Earning A Stable Income
There’s no doubt in my mind that you can be safe and earn a stable income with affiliate marketing.
However, by branching out to the additional marketing streams and income streams covered in this post you can set yourself up for even greater success.
I hope you enjoyed this post. This post may contain affiliate links, meaning I get a commission if you decide to purchase through my links at no additional cost to you.